Drumming is a great passion, and yet one that can cost you a lot of money. You need to buy everything from drumsticks to drum heads, beaters to mallets, and the drum set and cymbals, among other things.
However, it does not have to be too expensive. If it’s your passion, you would be glad to know that there are many cheap drum sets out there that don’t suck.
Well, the assumption is, “if it’s cheap, it’s not good.” But I am here to tell you that this is not always true.
In my more than 20 years of drumming, I have learned to identify good sounding drum set options when I see them, of which price has nothing to do with.
Some expensive drum sets have nothing special to offer, and you wonder why they are set so high.
As a beginner, you may not want to invest in such drum sets yet. Or perhaps you are a pro looking for an affordable kit for practice.
You have come to the right place. That is the reason I am putting together this guide.
What is the best cheap drum set?
Drums have greatly evolved over the years. What you can call “cheap” today could have been on the upper market years ago.
Hence, when we talk about the best cheap drum sets, it’s not that they are bad. Some of these drum kit options offer great performance, even for professional performance.
Consider the following:
Pearl offers some of the best cheap drum sets for beginners and experienced drummers. It’s one of those companies that don’t joke about offering the best on the market.
I believe there is no better cheap drum set on a budget than the Pearl Roadshow. The shells look professional, and cymbals are included to makes your drumming experience much better.
This kit may be at a steeper price point compared to other cheap sets, but it does a great job in terms of quality and value.
And since Pearl is not a new name in the world of drums, you can expect great quality.
The kit comes in several configurations, offered depending on your budget and needs. For this review, we have a four-piece kit with an 18-inch kick. Other configurations are a five-piece with a 20-inch kick and a five-piece with a 22-inch bass drum.
Entry-level drum sets have improved a lot. This Roadshow kit is excellent straight from the box. However, it would be better if you changed the stock heads.
Change the cymbals, too, as they don’t sound great – just like any other entry-level cymbals.
Included is metal hardware that will wow the user. But you can always upgrade them too.
• Excellent construction
• Solid hardware
• Poor-sound cymbals
Mapex has been offering high-quality drum sets for a very long time. One of my beginner sets was the Mapex Rebel, which I can recommend for any drummer out there.
They are well-crafted, sound excellent, and affordable.
Rebel targets the budget end of the market. It carries everything you need; drums, cymbals, stands, sticks, stool, and pedals.
It’s cheap, and yet with excellent quality. The shells feature 7.2mm thick, 9-ply, which offers the right tone and resonance. This conventional five-piece kit with two toms, a floor, a kick, and a snare drum also includes a 14-inch hi-hat and a 16-inch crash/ride.
In terms of hardware, you get double-braced stands and a bass drum/pedal combo. They are sturdy and offer excellent performance.
You may want to change the Remo heads later. But you can still use this one for a good play.
Tune them right, and you will see not much difference with the Roadshow, although the cymbals are worse.
• Excellent value for money
• It comes with a drum seat
• Good quality shells
• Better sounds than other cheaper kits
• At this price, it’s hard to criticize.
Those who have been drumming for long understand what Ludwig stands for. The company has been around since 1909, making wonderfully sounding drums.
Two of the most famous drummers, Ringo Starr and John Bonham, are known for using Ludwig drums.
Their Accent five-piece kit delivers a wonderful solution for the entry-level market. The shells feature five-ply of hardwood.
You get two toms in the package: one floor tom, a snare drum, and 22-inch kick drums.
All hardware is also included, which cymbals, a drum throne, and drumsticks. A hi-hat and crash cymbals are not included.
The most attractive feature of these drums is that they are cheap and yet sound good. But the cymbals are awful, and hence, you may have to replace them.
It is the quality of the Ludwig Accent that is the most interesting aspect. Tune them well, and you will find a full and loud sound.
Overall, this is a great set. You will love playing them for their quality.
Newer bass drums now feature standard pillows stuffed in them, improving the overall tonal quality. They sound clanky and resonant if not dampened.
• A good price
• They come from a good brand
• Good sounds
• Poor-sound cymbals
• The included stool is not adjustable
How much is a cheap drum set?
Beginner drum sets come in different configurations and quality. Generally, it depends on the configuration and the brand.
Cheap 7-piece drum sets will cost a higher than five-piece or four-piece kits.
Really cheap drum sets can cost as low as $300.
Here are some of the cheapest kits that cost less than 500 USD and yet have everything you need to start playing.
Mendini’s 5-piece kit is one of the cheapest drum sets you will ever come across. It costs about half the price of Pearl Roadshow.
For an absolute beginner, you will be better off with the cheapest kit, and this could be all you need.
Mendini may not be a very familiar name for most drummers because their main focus is on entry-level student drum. Do not expect the most exceptional quality from them.
The kit comes with everything you need to start playing right from the box. The drums look decent. They are wrapped in cheap plastic and have tiny lugs.
The cymbals are not good, which should not be a surprise on any entry-level kit.
In terms of hard, you may want to upgrade everything. However, this is what brings down the price. Also, the kick drum pedal included does not do a good job.
• Cheapest kit
• Good sounding shells
• It comes with everything a drummer needs
• Poor-quality hardware
• You may want to replace the drum heads
What can you get for less than $300? Well, you can have this Gammon five-piece drum kit. It’s not very far from the Mendini in terms of price.
It is slightly better than the Mendini, especially because the Gammon is a relatively more popular name. They have been offering cheap solutions for many years.
The first thing you will notice is that the drums shells are pretty impressive. Give them a little tender lover and care, and you will think they are pro kits.
Include cymbals are not anything to go with. The ride sounds like cheap sheet metal.
Concerning the hardware, Gammon has tried to offer the best. The kits come with metal knobs that hold the stand firmly in place.
Gammon seems to have invested a lot in the quality of their hardware and shells. And yet, they still come cheap.
• Sturdy hardware
• Good quality shells
• Better choice over the Mendini
• Poor quality cymbals
We are in the cheapest category of drums on the market. And it always good to start somewhere.
This is a very cheap drum set by any standard. But it comes with everything a drummer will need to start playing.
You get the snare, kick drum, two rack tom, floor tom, hi-hats and ride, drum throne, drumsticks, bass drum pedal, chrome hardware, and everything else a drummer can use. This includes sturdy shells, chain-driven pedals, and a partridge.
Hence, this is a drum kit a budding tub-thumper can play while weighing whether this is something they want to do for the rest of their likes. You will like it right from the box.
The drums are better sound. But the cymbals, like any cheap drum sets, are not good at all. The crash sounds like a sheet metal piece, something you want to change as soon as possible.
If you can compromise features, this kit will be a great way to set your drumming journey in motion. I would recommend shelling out on, say, Remo Ambassador heads or something like that. Also, use a towel on the bass to tame those wild resonations.
• Recommended for beginners
• You can easily upgrade it
• Poor-sounding cymbals
• The stool is not trustworthy
What’s the best drum set for beginners?
One of the most critical factors to consider when choosing a drum set is the brand. And in this case, Pearl is a brand you can always rely on.
This Pearl Roadshow kit is twice as much in price as other cheaper sets, like the Gammon Percussion drum set,
Pearl has been making high-quality drum sets for a long time, which is why this kit could be everything you need. Their starter and entry-level kits are quite impressive.
On this five-piece kit, you get three toms, a snare, and the bass drum. Mounted toms are fitted on the bass drum, while the floor tom features three adjustable legs.
The drums sound decent and versatile in terms of tuning. Hence, it can be used in a wide range of music styles.
Cymbals included are a set of 14-inch hats and a 16-inch crash/ride cymbal. They don’t sound good but are better than most entry-level drum kit cymbals.
Getting a good drum kit for under $500 is not easy. That is why you will feel good with Pearl’s Roadshow kits.
• Better sounding cymbals
• A beautiful finish
• Pearl hardware quality
• It would be better if it had another cymbal.
In the drumming community, PDP is one of the most respected brands. It’s known for making high-end drum sets.
Hence, if you have a little more cash to spend on your drum kit than the Pearl above, this PDP Player junior drum set should be good enough. It comes with a five-piece kit with a hi-hat and crashes cymbals.
You will realize that this is a compact kit for junior drummers, featuring a 12-inch snare, smaller cymbals, and an 18-inch kick drum. It’s not only perfect for beginners but for jazz drummers too.
It is one of the most famous larger junior drum sets on the market. The drums are smaller, but they deliver a big sound. It is possible to get full sound from the 18-inch bass, primarily since most professional drummers use such.
The toms are 8, 10, and 12-inches, and can be tuned/tensioned using a drum key. The two smaller one is mounted on the bass drum, while the floor tom comes with three adjustable legs.
• Small and compact kit
• Good sounding and durable drums
• Solid construction
• It does not include a drum throne
For those who need a low-cost drum set suited for beginners, you may want to consider this Gammon Percussion 5-piece kit. It is the low price-tag on this kit that’s most interesting.
With less than 300-USD, you have everything you need to start playing. That means it’s a full 5-piece drum set with cymbals, drums, hardware, a stool, and a pair of drumsticks.
The kit is configured with a bass drum, a snare drum, two mounted toms are a flow tom. The drums are full size – 22-inches kit, 14-inch snare, 12 and 13-inch toms, and 16-inch floor toms.
Each drum carries two drum heads, which can be tuned and adjusted according to your desire. The smaller toms come with mounting hardware on the bass drum and can be angled in different positions to suit the player’s needs.
Gammon’s hardware is pretty impressive. You get memory locks on the mounting hardware, which can be tightened to save your positions. It also comes with a single pedal that connects to the bass drum. A hi-hat stand has also been included.
The cymbals are pretty impressive in their sound. They may not be professional, but good enough for beginners.
• Features everything
• It sturdy
• Poor-quality shells
• You may need to replace the factory drum heads
• Replace the cymbals.
Cheap drum sets for kids
Best Choice Products is a reputable company that makes children’s products, which includes musical instruments. It may not be a prevalent name among drummers, but you will find many affordable drum sets for young drummers.
Since they focus on making kids’ stuff, you can be sure your child will enjoy this three-piece kit. It features a bass drum, two toms, drumsticks, a brass cymbal, and a cushioned drum throne. You also get a bass drum pedal, so you can start playing right from the box.
The cymbals suck. But there is nothing much you can expect from cymbals that come one beginner sets.
Anyway, at least here they are strong enough they will not crack quickly. Your child will play for a long time.
Note also that it might take you some time to set it up if you are completely green on drum sets. There is no instruction manual, which could have helped you much faster.
Generally, this is a beautiful choice of drum for junior drummers.
• Good sounding when tuned right
• It comes with everything you need to start playing
• Compact and useful
• You may want to get different cymbals
You may never have heard about GP percussion as it’s not a very widely recognized brand. But they have created one of the best beginner drum sets on the market.
For junior drummers, you want to get them something that is not overly expensive, compact, and yet good enough to motivate them. This 5-piece kit could be all you need for this.
It is configured with five drum parts, cymbals, a drum stool, pedals, hardware, sticks, and a drum key. They are ideally suited for kids between three and eight years old.
Most parents who want to support their children often finding themselves tied because of the expensive products out there. With products like the GP55 Junior drum kit, you don’t have to spend too much.
The set is equipped with everything the drummer will need to start playing. Besides, it looks sturdy and robust right from the box.
Your son or daughter will play for a long time before you think about upgrading.
• Good value for money
• Designed for kits
• Full package
• Those cymbals
• Small hi-hats
Talk of compact and portable drums kits suitable for kits and this could be your ultimate solution. This is another great choice if you cannot find the other two kits above with ease.
Music Alley may not be your ideal idea of a popular brand, but it does have a wide range of useful drum kits. This three-piece set is designed to teach the young drummer everything they need to know about drums.
Designed for ages three to seven, the kits will help them learn about rhythm and music creation. The shells come from real wood with tunable skins. They also have chrome-played hardware, which makes the kit seem professional.
The set carries a 14-inch bass drum, and 8-inch mounted snare, and 8-inch mounted tom, and a 10-inch cymbal. Hence, the set is right from playing straight from the box.
It also comes with the necessary accessories, including a pair of drumsticks, a drum throne, and a bass drum pedal. These components will set your child into action immediately.
• Features everything your kid needs to start playing
• Robust and sturdy hardware
• Budget-friendly and compact
• Easy to assemble
• Low-quality cymbals
• Available in only two colors
Cheap drum sets for adults
If you are looking for cheap 5-piece drum sets around, Mendini could be one of the best brands to consider. The MD S80 is a full-size kit that comes at an unheard-of price. And yet, it’s a very decent kit that any drummer will find useful.
I played these drums once while testing them out, and I was very impressed. I was not expecting such performance at this price range.
Their sound is surprisingly good, even with stock head-on. But since sound is a subjective matter, I will leave it to your judgment.
Also, this kit is set up like any other acoustic kit. Hence, you will find it very easy when transitioning to more advanced products.
On the negative side, this kit carries stock cymbals. Like any other beginner kit, there is nothing much you can get here.
Consider that many other kids do not come with cymbals, which is an added advantage here. You will not have to buy them separately if you want to start playing immediately.
It may come with its faults, but I think the Mendini is a pretty decent kit. After all, there are not many entry-level kits with this level of quality.
• The cheapest drum kit around
• Has everything
• Decent drum sounds
• Low-quality cymbals
• You would not want it on stage
I include this Gammon Five-piece drum set here because it’s among the best-selling cheap beginner drum sets. Also, it comes with some of the best features you would expect from a good-quality drum set.
At first, you would think this kit is a professional product. Like all standard beginner drum sets, it comes with everything you need to start playing.
This Gammon full-size kit is similar to the Mendini in many ways. That is to say; it sounds great for a drum set at this price range. You can also start playing right the box because it comes with a drum throne, sticks, and bass drum pedal.
You may want to change the heads and tune them right to get better sound. The cymbals, like any other cheap drum set, are low-quality.
However, the Gammon is a bit expensive compared to the Mendini. Its hardware is also a bit sturdy. This could contribute to its popularity on the internet.
Hence, you will find this kit very useful, with a sturdier and professional look.
• One of the cheapest and yet useful drum kits
• Everything you need to start playing right from the box
• Decent sounds
• Low-quality cymbals
• Not good enough for stage application
Electronic drum kits have become very popular in the music world. They offer a great invention and approaches to drum sounds, which is why they have always been more expensive than acoustic ones. But they don’t sound as good.
Alesis entered the market to bring in more affordable solutions, challenging giants like Yamaha and Roland. There Alesis Nitro Mesh electronic drum kit proves what the company can do as one of the best cheap electric drums.
The set features all-mesh heads, which makes them sound more realistic. They are also much quieter than rubber pads.
Hitting the heads feels like hitting a page of a substantial cushion. No wonder Alesis Nitro Mesh is considered the best beginner electronic drum kit out there.
If you are looking for quiet practice on a high-quality electronic drum kit, this could be your ultimate solution. It’s great for a home practice where you will not disturb your neighbors.
The kit also packs a wide range of drum kits onboard with unique sounds for personal practice. Play along the onboard songs and use the training mode to improve your skills.
• Cheapest all-mesh e-drum kit
• Easy to use module
• Easy to setup
• Compatible with a double-bass pedal
• Lack advanced features
Good cheap drum sets
Good Cheap Drum Sets to buy in 2021
There are many cheap drum sets on the market today. But you need to understand that not all of them are good.
When choosing, it is always good to consider the brand. And in this case, Mapex is one of the manufacturers that will never disappoint.
This Tornado 5-piece 20-inch Fusion Burgundy drum kit is a perfect choice for those who need high-quality cheap solutions. It is a strong kit that will last you for a long time.
Right from the box, you will notice that this kit is made with high standards.
You will often find these kits with adult musicians who want to make percussion tracks. It’s also good for beginners who want good-quality in their first drum kits.
The kit is configured with a 20-inch bass drum, a snare, and two toms. It also features a pedal, hardware, 16-inch crash cymbal, and hi-hat cymbals.
Since it comes with all hardware, this kit could be a perfect gift for your friend. It’s compact, and hence, will not take up too much space.
• Affordable, high-quality drum kit – under $300
• It comes with everything you need to start playing
• Consider changing the cymbals
• It does not sound as good as a professional drum kit
When it comes to delivering high-quality products in the drum world, Tama is one of the excelled brands. As a popular company it is, Tama understands the importance of customer satisfaction.
Club Jam is a line of compact drum sets the company released recently. It’s one of the best cheap drum sets you will find out there.
Note that this only a shell pack, which means it does not come with cymbals and hardware. Entry-level drum set cymbals are poor-quality, but Tama here gives you a chance to find your own pieces.
This is a four-piece kit configured with and 18-inch bass drum, 10-inch and 14-inch floor toms, and a 13-inch snare drum.
All the drums feature 6-ply mersawa/poplar shells. This is a hybrid mixture of wood that promises soft highs and boosted low-end sounds. Such features are often found on higher-end kits.
It does not include hardware for the cymbals. However, it comes with built-in stands, which makes setup to be easy. This is a feature of the best cheap drum kit.
This kit is perfect for beginners or professional drummers who need a second kit for recording.
• Budget-friendly and superb-quality from a compact drum kit
• High-end sound
• From a reputable brand
• Hardware not included
Questlove is one of the most famous drummers in the world. He wanted to create something compact and yet useful for gigging drummers, helping them avoid the hustle of carrying around heavy drum sets. Hence, the Breakbeats line was born.
This could be one of the smallest kits you have ever seen. But don’t be fooled, it’s very powerful. The idea behind such a size was to offer drummers convenience apartments. It’s, therefore, perfect for young drummers too.
The shell pack comes configured with a 16-inch bass drum, a 10-inch tom with an auxiliary clamp, a 13-inc floor tom, and a 14-inch floor tom.
If you are looking for a beginner kit that does not suck, go for this kit. Although it a small cheap kit that would attract young drummers more, adult players will also find it very useful.
Since Ludwig is a highly-acclaimed brand, you would expect to get excellent service from this best cheap drum kit. It’s designed for the modern drummer.
• Compact and high-quality drum kit
• Easy to setup
• Great construction with everything one needs in beginner drum kits.
• It does not come with hardware and cymbals
• More attractive to younger players
Cheap drum sets under 200
If you want to go as low as possible, the Lagrima 5-piece drum set could be your ultimate choice. It’s hard to complain at this price range, even if everything else does not fall in the category of your ideal quality.
What you are looking at here is just a gilt-edged chance to get into the drumming realm. That means you can only use it to know what drums are and how you are supposed to play them.
You can easily replace the cymbals and heads to get better sound.
The drum kit is configured with a 22-inch kick drum, 12-inch, and 13-inch toms, a 16-inch floor tom, and a 14-inch snare drum.
You can adjust the snare, which is a useful feature at this price. Also, you get a drum stool, a set of sticks, a bass drum pedal, a crash/ride cymbal, hi-hat, and a cymbal stand.
The best thing about this drum kit is that it’s well designed for adult players. There is always something nice you will like.
• Excellent sound
• A full-sized drum kit
• Poor-quality cymbals
• A rickety drum stools
• No instructions
When looking for kids’ drum sets, price is always the most significant considerations. There always no need to spend too much on beginner kits when there is no assurance of continuation.
First-Act-Discovery is a brand that I had never heard of before, but I am glad I stumbled into it. This drum kit is designed for kids. It’s very cheap and entertaining available in pink color.
The drum kit comes with everything your child will need to start playing drums. All the features offer and easy approach to drumming.
• One of the biggest advantages of this drum kit is that it comes with learning guides for kids. That means they can study different patterns on their own.
• Very easy to play. It is crucial to buy a drum kit that encourages your kid to play, motivating them with every strike. This kit has such features. The hi-hat sounds wonderful.
• It has very many features for kids. From the build-quality to their finishes, these drum kits are designed to kits.
• Compact and useful. The small drums and hardware are perfect for junior drum players.
• It may not be good for older kids
Buying drum sets for your kits can be quite confusing. On the one hand, you want to get the best for them. But then, you are not sure whether or not they will continue drummer.
That is why it would be best to find something that is below $200. Getting a budget kit, like the Mendini Cecilio Junior drum set here, is a good choice.
The kit features a 16-inch by 11-inch kick drum, a 10-inch by 6-inch tom, and a 10-inch by 5-inch snare drum with a stand. You also get a 9.5-inch cymbal with a cymbal arm.
Other components include a pair of wooden drumsticks, an adjustable padded drum throne, easy-to-read instructions.
Hence, the set comes with everything your kits need to start playing. It’s also the cheapest drum set you can find on the market.
This kit is well designed for junior drummers who want to start their drumming career. Buy adult beginners can also use it to learn a few tricks.
• An affordable kit
• Includes sticks and a throne
• It is good for all ages
• It does not offer room for growth
• It looks more like a toy
Cheap used drum sets for sale
When looking for the best drum sets for beginners, you need something as cheap as possible and yet high-quality. Since there are so many beginners sets out there, it can be hard to identify the right one.
If you don’t want new sets, you can easily find used drum sets for sale cheap. Some of the sellers have upgraded their kits, and hence, you will be getting better sounds.
Used drum sets offer an excellent value for money if you find the right item. Luckily there is a wide range of sites where they are listed.
A used drum set sold at less than $500 could be close to $1000 when new. Or it could have been less than $300 when new but now upgraded with better features.
Most cheap drum sets do not offer the best sounds. As you can see from the reviews above, they mostly have poor sounding cymbals, and the shells require you to change.
By the time you will be upgrading, your kit will not be the same as when you bought it. You can also list it with selling sites for such products and better prices.
How much do drum sets usually cost?
Different factors determine the cost of a drum kit. Generally, you find a good deal between $300 and $1000.
These differences come from the quality of shells, hardware included, custom builds, hand-made, tiers of quality offered by the brand, and the number of pieces.
Used drum sets are often the most recommended options for beginners.
Beginner cheap drum sets cost between $150 and $500. The best can go up to $800, which would have entered the intermediate world.
Intermediate sets cost between $500 and $800 for the higher end of beginner sets. The higher-end of intermediate sets will cost you between $800 and $2000 while anything above this is professional. 6